What is Joe Biden’s net worth?

The vast majority, about two-thirds, of President Joe Biden’s net worth is tied up in real estate after decades of buying and selling homes in Delaware and the surrounding areas.

Biden is worth about $10 million, according to Forbes with the president owning two homes in Delaware – a mansion in Wilmington, and a summer house in Rehoboth Beach.

The pandemic pushed up the value of Biden’s beach house to $4.5 million – after he paid about $2.7 million for it in 2017 – with those living in the cities looking for more space. But high interest rates have now stopped the increase in the value of Biden’s homes.

As president, Biden makes $400,000, which has been the presidential salary since George W Bush. But compared to Bush, Biden is not getting the same bang for his buck. Adjusted for inflation, Bush was getting $717,000 in today’s dollars.

Biden opened up a $250,000 line of credit in 2022, taking out more than $100,000 by the end of last year, according to Forbes. It has a variable interest rate of 1.99 percent – meaning that Biden’s cost of borrowing is affected by interest rates.

Biden has long spoken about his humble beginnings.

During a campaign event in Detroit on May 19, Biden said: “I got out of law school — I’m the first in my family ever to go to college. I got out of law school and had a job with a fancy law firm, and I quit and became a public defender. And one thing led to another, here I am.”

He added: “Like an awful lot of folks growing up in a situation where — basically, middle-class family; three-bedroom, split-level home with four kids and a grandpop living with us. You know, we were okay. I mean, we didn’t have any money, but we were okay.”

Biden has often visited Rehoboth Beach, Delaware during his time in the White House (AFP via Getty Images)
Biden has often visited Rehoboth Beach, Delaware during his time in the White House (AFP via Getty Images)

Biden’s father became a car salesman, and the future president headed off to attend the University of Delaware before going to law school at Syracuse University. He then went back to Delaware and joined a law firm before becoming a public defender. The job was part-time and he also took on work as a defense lawyer in civil cases. But in 1971, he opened up his own practice. That was a short-lived venture as he was elected to the senate the following year.

Biden bought large homes before it was clear he could afford them. He got a loan from his father-in-law to buy a home in Newark, Delaware before he set his sights on one in Wilmington as well. Managing to convince his parents to buy the Wilmington home, Biden purchased his parents’ home and leased it out. He lived in a cottage close to a country club, managing its swimming pool in exchange for free rent.

“I was probably the only working attorney in Delaware who lifeguarded on Saturdays,” Biden wrote in his memoir Promises to Keep from 2007. He then purchased a farm on 85 acres in Maryland intending to set up a family compound.

With three mortgages and a loan to pay to his father-in-law, Biden sold the three homes to pay for a 1723 colonial north of Wilmington. He used that home as collateral on a $20,000 loan to pay for radio ads during his 1972 campaign for the Senate. Biden won that race at the age of 29 and just turned 30 in time to enter the upper chamber and clear its age restrictions.

Biden lost his wife and young daughter in a car crash in December 1972, just days after they purchased a house in Chevy Chase, north of downtown Washington, DC. Not long after, Biden was planning on selling his Delaware home.

“It wasn’t that there were too many memories there but too few–it represented all our lost dreams. The house, still spare in its furnishings, was like a reminder of the things that would never be,” Biden wrote in his memoir.

Three years later, he bought a mansion, writing that “Ordinarily it would have been out of my price range, but this was the middle of a recession and an energy crisis. Nobody wanted it.”

He bought it for $185,000, borrowing $160,000, Forbes noted. The Biden family lived in the 10,000-square-foot home for two decades, selling it in 1996 for 1.2m.

Biden then purchased some land in the same area for $350,000, where he built two houses. When he was vice president, he rented out a cottage on the property to the Secret Service. In 2012, the service paid the Bidens $26,400, The Washington Times reported at the time.

After leaving the White House in 2017, Biden sold books and delivered speeches, raking in $11.1m that year alone. That’s when he bought the $2.7m home where he has often gone as president.

Biden’s total net worth is also made up of a $1m pension, a $250,000 pension for First Lady Jill Biden, and an annuity in addition to some cash, according to Forbes.